France has told law enforcement officers to remain alert and armed all the time, as terror groups have allegedly activated sleeper cells in the country. The gunman involved in a deadly standoff at a kosher market in eastern Paris is also believed to have told hostages before being killed that "more and more" militants are now going to come.
Authorities have asked French officers to remove their social media presence and be ready with weapons due to the activation of sleeper cells over the last 24 hours in the country, according to CNN.
Hostages at the kosher market also heard gunman Ahmedy Coulibaly – before he was killed by forces Friday – speaking on phone with unknown people discussing targeting of police officers in France, says another report by the news channel. more >>
Paris has offered an "honorary citizen" to the Charlie Hebdo magazine even as French forces were hunting for the girlfriend of one of the gunmen on Saturday, the day after they managed to kill three hostage takers, including two suspects involved in Wednesday's massacre supposedly to take revenge for mocking Prophet Mohammad.
The French government is granting the satirical weekly one million euros, or $1.18 million, to help it run "next week and the week after that and the week after that," Reuters quoted Culture Minister Fleur Pellerin as saying.
Honorary citizenship of the capital is given rarely but mostly to "distinguished great resistance fighters against dictatorship and barbarism," Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo was quoted as saying. more >>
UPDATE: 4:30 p.m. ET Jan. 9, 2015
French President Francois Hollande confirmed in his speech to the nation Friday that four hostages died inside the Paris Kosher supermarket that was attacked by gunman Amedy Coulibaly, 32, who was also killed. Although 12 hostages were freed from the supermarket it's also believed that Coulibaly's girlfriend and accomplice, Hayat Boumeddiene, 26, escaped the building either with the hostages or before they were released.
Terrorist group Al-Qaeda in Yemen has claimed responsibility for the Wednesday attack on the French newspaper Charlie Hebdo where 12 people were killed. The two men responsible for the attack, brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi, were killed during a shootout with police on Friday at a large printing warehouse northeast of Paris. more >>
A second standoff situation has developed at a grocery store in Paris, and police believe the suspect who has taken hostages might also be involved with the killing of a policewoman on Thursday.
The AFP reports that the attack has been carried out by Amedy Coulibaly who has taken at least five hostages, including women and children, in a Kosher grocery store in eastern Paris. Two of the hostages are said to be in their 80s. Police have moved in to surround the building and evacuate anyone in the area; schools have been placed in lockdown in order to protect children near the store, and parents have gathered outside the school.
Authorities believe Coulibaly might also be with suspect Hayat Boumeddiene, the woman suspected of being involved in the shooting death of officer Clarissa Jean-Philippe on Thursday during a routine traffic stop. more >>
The prime suspects in the terror attack on satirical newspapers Charlie Hebdo that killed 12 people on Wednesday have reportedly been surrounded inside a printing house northeast of Paris, and according to a French member of Parliament, have said that they want to "die as martyrs" A hostage has reportedly been taken by the gunmen.
CNN reported on Friday morning that Yves Albarello, representing the Dammartin-en-Goele area where the gunmen are cornered, spoke with French channel iTele to provide the latest update on the manhunt in France that has stretched over two days. He noted that the suspects have spoken with police and told them of their desire.
The gunmen, identified as brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi, killed 12 people in Paris and fled the scene on Wednesday. They are believed to be hiding out inside a house in the small industrial town located 25 miles outside the capital. more >>
A number of Muslim groups have condemned the terror attack on French magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris that left 12 people dead, and argued that Islam is a "religion of peace and non-violence" that should not be tied to the barbaric acts committed in its name.
"Nothing can justify the heinous crime that was perpetrated against journalists of Charlie Hebdo in Paris today," said Sufi leader Sheikh Khaled Bentounes regarding the Wednesday attack.
"Islam is a religion of peace and non-violence. Do not let ignorance justify the intolerable. We shall never admit that acts of unspeakable barbarism are being committed in its name. The Islam experienced by the vast majority of Muslims in the world has nothing to do with these acts that are contrary to the fundamental values of this religion." more >>